Public elementary and high school curriculums in Costa Rica are outdated by about 20 years, the daily La Nación recently reported. This is most true in the sciences and social sciences, said Alejandrina Mata, Vice-Minister of Academics at the Public Education Ministry.
The social studies curriculum dedicates various lessons to agricultural production in the 1980s, even though the country’s economy is now based largely on manufacturing and tourism.
History classes do not cover the 21st century, and civics teachers do not go into detail on each Costa Rican President.
In science, students learn material has three states – solid, liquid and gas. They do not discuss the fourth state, plasma.
Marvin Carvajal, national advisor for social studies, told La Nación that the curriculum does not include occurrences such as the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on the United States.